Distinguished, may I humbly welcome you all to this very important occasion. I refer to this gathering as very important because it seeks to discuss and address very vital issues that concerns two of the most important strata of our demographic structure--women and children.
For this purpose, I wish to thank the organizers if this event for deeming it fit to put up this event.
You will agree with me that women and children form the bedrock of our society. Permit me to define woman in my own terms, as the source of all human lives. Whether as a president or minister; teacher or student; trader or artisan; man or woman; professional or technician: women is the source.
Children on their own form the cradle or beginning of human lives.
Sequel to the above therefore, it is not an accident that we are gathered here today to dialogue on the possible way of arresting two evil machinations that threaten the sanctity of these two sets---- women and child trafficking, and prostitution.
From available statistics, including that of the United Nations, UNICEF, etc. on women and child trafficking, Africa happens to be the worst hit. Every time we get report of hundreds of women and children been shipped out of Africa.
These nefarious activities are not only injurious to our economy, they equally debase the dignity of women, just as they make our children most vulnerable in the entire world. If these acts continue then our present will not only be compromised; our future as a nation will also be jeopardized.
Prostitution, as many say, is the oldest trade in the world. But this does not justify its continuous practice. It is an immoral trade that erodes the virtue of a woman. More so, it inhibits the woman from exploiting her real God-given talents and potentials. That amount to a loss of great human capital.
Considering the enormous adverse effects all these illicit practices have on our collective psyche and value as a people, on our economy, and social lives, it becomes a big challenge to all of us to galvanize efforts to combat these crimes to humanity.
We must continue to advocate for laws and policies that will kick against these evil activities in a more practical terms.
The civil societies and other responsible organizations, like this one today, must intensify the public on the dangers of these practices.
We must also strive to improve our value system to height that will frown all these practices.
It is my hope that in a very short while we will look back and have cause to be grateful for taking such decisive steps. We must stamp our feet for the dignity of women and protection of children.
Once again, welcome to this occasion and God bless you.